By Dan Askin
Cruise Critic Contributor
3.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating: Entertainment

Carnival Fascination Entertainment & Activities

Carnival has long excelled in its major production shows, with Playlist Production revue shows featuring fast-paced musical numbers and elaborate costumes and sets. One of the most popular nightspots is the Punchliner Comedy Club, with its kid-friendly shows in the early evening and adults-only shows later in the p.m.

Casino action, dancing, game shows, trivia challenges, art auctions and truly a plethora of other onboard pursuits -- let's not forget that hairy chest poolside competition -- make for a stimulating week onboard.

Carnival Fascination Public Rooms

Designed by the line's award-winning interior architect Joe Farcus, the ship features a variety of dramatic, Hollywood-inspired public spaces.

There's the aforementioned Palace Lounge, which showcases the line's onboard revues and passenger talent shows, plus 12 bars and lounges scattered throughout to ship to tickle anyone's fancy. The Passage to India Lounge (don't forget to pose for pictures in front of the two life-like elephants guarding the entrance) and Diamonds Are Forever dance club, which, as the name implies, features an interior with diamonds as the central theme, are two of the most popular onboard locales.

For more low-key entertainment, passengers will find the Tara Library, the Galleria Shopping Mall -- discounted jewelry and Carnival-logo items anyone? -- and a card room on Atlantic deck. Passengers will find the ship's guest services and shore excursion desks on the soaring atrium's ground floor. The small 24-hour Internet Cafe is also here -- but there's bow-to-stern Wi-Fi should you want to bring your own laptop or Wi-Fi enabled device. Connectivity is sold in a number of packages.

Carnival Fascination Spa & Fitness

The new 12,000-square-foot Spa Carnival facility -- salon, massage area, gymnasium and his/her changing rooms -- is nearly as spacious and modern as that in any of the newer ships in Carnival's fleet.

Fascination offers a host of tried and true spa services, including various massages (back, scalp, foot and ankle), exotic seaweed wraps and warm stone rhythmic massage therapy, plus facials, cellulite reduction treatments and even couples massages.

Look also for teeth whitening opportunities, manicures, pedicures and men's barbering services. Specials are listed daily. Fascination also offers spa services for teens, including facials, and private sauna and steam rooms.

On the fitness side, the ship's gymnasium is open from 6 a.m. to 8 pm daily. There are treadmills, Stairmasters, stationary bikes and free weights available for use, and the 180-degree ocean views could not be more spectacular from the Deck 12 venue. Personal trainers are on hand throughout the day to offer assistance. Look for daily stretching sessions and a series of free seminars (secrets to a flatter stomach, burn fat faster and eat more to weigh less) throughout the week. Daily Pilates, yoga and indoor cycling classes cost extra, as does personal training.

Fascination also features an onboard basketball and volleyball court, and a jogging track. Fascination's one pool is located midship. The surrounding deck area features metallic palms; a pair of hot tubs abutting the pool; and a stage. During sea days, this space hosts pool deck Olympics, ice carving demonstrations and plenty of live music (from calypso to classic rock covers). The ship's other area for water-based fun is the stern-situated Carnival WaterWorks. Waterworks features a four-story tall, 300-foot-long corkscrew waterslide; an 82-foot-long triple-lane waterslide (great for racing); and a spray park, complete with various sculptures spewing water.

The nine-hole mini course is a popular site. The adults-only Serenity Deck is a teak deck space located on the stern (out of earshot from the noisy WaterWorks). The Serenity Deck has two hot tubs and loungers with plush blue padding. There are both sunny and shady spots, with yellow umbrellas and a thatched-roof overhang providing cover.

Carnival Fascination For Kids

The ship offers programming for children in five age groups: Camp Carnival for kids ages 2 - 5, 6 - 8 and 9 - 11; Circle C for 12- to 14-year-olds; and Club O2 for older teens.

Young and older youths alike enjoy a host of PlayStation2 and Nintendo Wii games, sports, music, plus art activities and parties.

Family fun awaits at the nine-hole miniature golf course or at the three swimming pools, including a children's wading pool and a main pool offering a 115-foot-long water slide. There's even a turn-down service for kids consisting of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies alongside Carnival's renowned towel animals created nightly by cabin stewards.

Carnival Fascination Ship Stats

  • Crew: 920
  • Launched: 1994
  • Decks: 10
  • Passengers: 2,052
  • Registry: Bahamas
  • CDC Score: 90

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